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Merkel: Europe still 'hasn't done homework' on refugees

31 August 2017

"This is about obligations that Great Britain has entered into and that naturally must remain on the books", Merkel said in her weekly podcast published Saturday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday called for an extension of European Union border controls in the passport-free Schengen area beyond a planned end in November.

Such a coalition would be one possible alternative to a return of a Merkel-led coalition between her CDU/CSU conservatives and the SPD.

The chancellor has been holding rallies across the country for more than two weeks now, touting her 12-year record of halving unemployment, citing progress in the refugee crisis and pledging expanded broadband access.

"This statement about Minister Ozoguz is racist", Merkel said.

Gauland has backed away from his use of the word "disposed" but otherwise has stood by his remarks.

Her party's support dropped as a outcome and led to a surge in support for the right-wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, which pollsters say could win up to 10 per cent in next month's election.

Explaining that under the existing circumstances it is not possible to start negotiations to expand the scope of the EU customs Union with Turkey, Merkel said that she will talk about the issue with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday.

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"The sanctions will be canceled when the cause is eliminated", Merkel told reporters at an annual summer press conference, Sputnik International reports. Therefore, the defiant chancellor told the anti-refugee hecklers that under her leadership, Berlin still welcomes asylum-seekers. Although she's drawn thousands to hear her stump speech, schools in Berlin are still on vacation and many if not most Germans have yet to tune in to the campaign.

Mrs Merkel said it was unfair that Greece and Italy were left on their own carrying the full burden of the refugee crisis "simply because of their geography".

Merkel said it was important to more clearly differentiate between those fleeing poverty, who usually are not granted asylum, and those whose needs are humanitarian and usually do receive asylum protection. "I would very much like having better relations, but we have to face reality ..."

According to Merkel, measures are needed to find long-term solutions and sustainable structures. The Government claims it never put a numerical figure on the number it would accept through the "Dubs scheme" - which was championed by Labour peer Lord Dubs, himself a Jewish refugee to the United Kingdom from Nazi-occupied Europe during WWII.

She says: "It can not be that Europe only shows solidarity when it helps some".

German Chancellor Angela Merkel once again called on the Turkish authorities to release jailed German citizens, Deutsche Welle reports.

Mentioning German-Turkish journalist Deniz Yucel and several others by name, Merkel said, "Our demand is very clear: those people who are in prison should be freed".

Merkel: Europe still 'hasn't done homework' on refugees